June 6, 2012
First, Third, and DH for 6/6/12
Fantasy prognostication is not a perfect science, but my Value Picks have been solid, graduating six players in seven weeks, including top performers like Adam LaRoche, Chris Davis, and Will Middlebrooks. Along the way, I’ve made some bad calls too, of course, largely on single-league players like Brad Eldred and Conor Gillaspie. This week features one of both kinds—a promotion and a demotion—along with the usual crop of strong performers available on at least 80 percent of most leagues’ waiver wires.
My bad. I figured Bob Melvin would take leather over wood in his first-base dilemma, but he went with Kila Ka’aihue (Yahoo! 1%, ESPN 0%, CBS 3%) over Daric Barton (Yahoo! 0%, ESPN 0%, CBS 1%). The A’s demoted Barton Saturday, giving first base to the Kila Monster and leaving me with egg on my face.
Chisenhall has done more than just replace Hannahan’s more-than-adequate .276/.353/.419 line at the hot corner. He homered as part of his two-hit return to action on Tuesday, then clubbed another on Friday, and he currently owns a .333/.333/.667 triple-slash line. Both of those homers came at home, a good indication that the power expected from him should continue, although HitTracker indicates that wind helped Friday’s 426-foot jack travel an extra 52 feet.
As BP 2012 points out, Cleveland fans debated last season whether Chisenhall or Jason Kipnis was the team’s top prospect, and Kipnis won the argument on the field, hitting .272/.333/.507 against Chisenhall’s .255/.284/.415. The third baseman’s plate approach had much to do with his lack of dominance, as he whiffed 22 percent of the time while walking in just 3.6 percent of his plate appearances. The problem wasn’t the way he attacked strikes, swinging at 69 percent of them and making contact with 90 percent. It was his inability to lay off balls that hurt him; his 42.3 swing rate on pitches outside the zone would have ranked him in the top ten in MLB had he qualified.